When changing the sheets last month, I noticed that our pillows looked – well – disgusting. They had a
bunch of yellowish slobber type stains on them and no longer held their shape. I couldn’t remember when we purchased them and decided then and there it was time for new pillows.
I had no idea there were so many different types of pillows. Pillows for back sleepers, stomach sleepers, side sleepers. Down pillows, down alternative pillows, memory foam pillows. Expensive pillows, cheap pillows. Pillows to keep you cool at night. You name it – there’s a pillow.
I had determined not to go with the cheapest, but to try and go up a notch and pick a good quality pillow. I am a side sleeper and set my sights on those types of pillows. I pulled out a few, squeezed them, felt them for support, etc. and selected our replacements. Side sleeper pillows come in medium firmness and firm with the thought being that they need to support the head for the width of the shoulders.
I got home, changed out our pillows and tossed the old ones into the garbage. Three days later I was greatly regretting this new purchase. Sore doesn’t even begin to describe the state of my neck. I was so uncomfortable that I chucked the new pillow and just slept without. I then went on a search for a new pillow.
I googled pillows to find out which were considered the best. I researched side sleepers to see why there was a pillow specifically for this. I read reviews. I was determined to find a pillow that would not hurt my neck, even if I had to try out every pillow in Columbus.
I found a suggestion that recommended holding a pillow up to the wall and laying your head against it – simulating sleep – to see if it was the pillow for you. I received quite a few strange looks , but gave it a try. After much trial and error I finally found the pillow for me. That first night’s sleep was glorious and I haven’t experienced any neck issues.
Now, there are lots of opinions about pillows, how often they should be cleaned and replaced. As far as cleaning goes:
- Huffpost Healthy Living recommends a zippered pillow protector (not the pillow case) that is washed every 3 weeks and washing the pillow itself every 3 months. (Down pillows have to be dry cleaned, but down alternatives can be washed.)
- Martha Stewart recommends washing twice a year.
Replacing of pillows should be done every 2-3 years to ensure proper head and neck support.